Opinion: A "Green Deal" for Europe must include heating and cooling and be built on Heat Pump technology

| With high expectations, are we awaiting the "Green Deal" for Europe! This vision announced by our President-elect Ursula von der Leyen may be decisive for a more unified and sustainable Europe. It may also be the last option to keep global warming within 1.5°C, activating, integrating and motivating all sectors of society in this joint endeavour.

 

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A "Green Deal" for Europe has been rightfully compared with Kennedy’s proposal to put a man on the moon. The direct impact of the moon-landing on the average human life may have been small. It did, however, have a profound impact on unifying a nation, accelerating its research and development as well as its production ecosystem. This impact was felt far beyond the boundaries of the United States and cannot be valued highly enough. 

 

We will need similar emotion, drive and determination to put global warming at the centre of a tremendous, yet manageable energy transition.

 

The European Heat Pump Association (EHPA) will support an ambitious "Green Deal" for Europe, as we are convinced of its urgency. At least for the heating sector, we are confident that its full decarbonization within the next 30 years is possible – using existing technology. The limitations are certainly not technical, but political.

 

Thus, Ursula von der Leyen should give priority to a sector, which is responsible for nearly 50% of Europe's final energy demand and 27% of CO2 emissions. Due to its size and impact, decarbonizing heating and cooling deserves the same attention as the decarbonization of electricity and transport.

 

Heat Pump technologies are available, reliable and efficient. Already today, products based on the refrigeration cycle are everywhere – in your fridge, your dishwasher and your dryer, in refrigerant machines, in industrial applications, in (electric) cars and in many European buildings, where they provide cooling as well as heating and hot water. They provide these services based on the efficient use of renewable and waste energy.

 

Moreover, the demand-flexibility potential of the technology will enable faster and broader uptake of renewable electricity and help stabilize the electric grid. Heat Pumps will thus put Europe's energy efficiency, renewable energy and climate targets in a much closer reach.

 

Heat Pumps are a technology invented in Europe. European manufacturers are market leaders in many segments of this industry's value chain, even worldwide, and the European research infrastructure is diverse and well developed. Therefore, its development status is an essential basis for an even faster transition.

 

The Heat Pump industry supports a "Green Deal" for Europe. We call on Ursula von der Leyen to recognize heating and cooling from the beginning of the process, as this will be vital for its success.

 

Thomas Nowak

Secretary General of the European Heat Pump Association

 

 

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Contact details

Ms Eirini Litina, +32 (2) 400 10 35, eirini.litina@ehpa.org

 

Note to the editor

EHPA promotes awareness and deployment of Heat Pump technology in Europe. All activities aim at creating a market environment that facilitates a faster deployment of Heat Pump technology to unleash its benefits on a European level: efficient heating and cooling using renewable energy. EHPA also coordinates the Heat Pump Keymark – a European certification scheme for all heat pumps, combination heat pumps and hot water heater.

For more information, please visit: www.ehpa.org.